During the swear in ceremony of Modi cabinet the crowd was crazy next to Modi was the New Union Minister Pratap Sarangi,having a new adjective, the Modi of Odisha.The National and International media was full of praise for a week long for this poor,low profile- still motivated and down to earth Parliamentarian of Odisha. This praise some how bite some vested interest and most probably within the BJP, who feel insecure due to the emergence of a New popular Power Center in Odisha,who was the peoples’ choice for the State President of BJP since long.
The media which was full of praise by describing Sarangi as a Saint; suddenly started assassinating his public credibility and entangled him with the murder case of Graham Stains and his two children.
My association with the Graham Stains case is very close and deep,the video footage of Stains murder place and the exclusive bites of the villagers of Monoharpur is still preserved in my video archive.
It was around the month of February 1999 when this incident was occurred,media in those days was not hunting for breaking news,so this incidence begged media and so to say public attention after a week or so.I was then the Producer and News Head of a Prime Time News and Current Affairs Program of Doordarshan called Darpan. During those days no private news channels were on the air and even in the National Level NDTV was producing news contents for Star News and Zee News was active,so there were no Aaj Tak,NDTV or any present days private News chennels.OTV was a cable network in those days.
Inspired by the response of International media we a News team of Odisha,I with my team,Sampad Mahapatra,then Odisha head of NDTV,D.N. Singh,then Odisha head of Zee News and probably Pratap Jena,current Panchayatraj Minister of Odisha and then President of Chhatra BJD either accompany us or joined us en-root, rushed to Monoharpur and collected the ground report.So far I remember,no political outfit or religious outfit were remotely involved with this heinous crime.As per my conviction it was mostly an accidental crime,may be I am wrong but surely this murder was not the outcome of any organizational plan like Bajrangdal.Dara Sing was a local activist,who used to hackle missionary activities and cow smuggling like people do in other parts of the State.
So it is funny and ridiculous to watch media reports allegedly involving Pratap Sarangi in the Graham Stains murder case.Truely he is a hardcore Bajrang Dal leader,but paradoxically he is such a kind,selfless and honest a person ,that the instinct of crime is miles away from his conscious and subconscious mind.
The real story lies in a different turf.The workers of BJP and people of Odisha had expected Pratap Sarangi as the State BJP chief ,but the vested interest coterie of Odisha BJP imposed Basant Panda. Admittedly Pratap Sarangi is a CM material,at-least in BJP the examples are plenty like Yogi Aditya Nath.So he is being considered as a potential threat for the persons those who have hijacked Odisha BJP without visible potentiality within them.
However the real hero has been emerged, he is surely the future CM face of Odisha BJP.He is equally a threat for Naveen Pattnaik and all the so-called CM aspirants of BJP. The assembly result of Odisha could have been different with a projected CM face like Sarangi. This reality is hunting few people.